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The benefits of an early war....

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Strategy & Tips' started by Sentinali, Apr 16, 2002.

  1. Sentinali

    Sentinali Chieftain

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    Historically I have played Civ, Civ2, and Civ3, very peacefully, lying low until I have developed a huge tech lead. In Civ 3 this is much harder to accomplish.

    This is nothing ground breaking but I have, on Monarch difficulty, had enourmous success with a early war straight out of the gate. I usually take a couple AI cities and get an area of land unmatch by most of the other civ in the game. In addition, because of my despotic government, it really does nothing but accelerate my empires growth rate.

    Comparing one game in which I initiated an early war versus and ly low philosophy I found my overall civ score was almost double.

    Anybody with a similar experience. Any favorite civ for this strat, so far I favor the Aztec for tiny maps and the Persians in standard maps.
     
  2. No.Dice

    No.Dice Warlord

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2001
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    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    An early war is absolutely neccessary at higher levels, theres basically no way to stay competitive with the extra units the AI recieves and its ability to build settlers with only 18-24 shields (deity-emperor respectively). You need that extra power on the histograph to renogiate peace treaties (for cities/techs) with the AI, in order to support a decent number of troops.


    I play on huge pangaea maps with the max number civs. Usually i'm wedged between four civs with little room to build out, more than half the time i'd say.

    I find games on huge pangaeas more difficult than standard sized maps. For one, all of the expansionist civs are present to snag the goody huts and acquire techs, which are promptly traded to everybody else. Your rivals rocket toward the middle ages at breakneck pace. The tech pace is significantly slower with fewer civs, or if you're playing on continents. Your window of opportunity slams shut as your swordsmen find pikemen guarding the enemy core cities. Also, having so many rivals present, declaration of war on any one civ, can lead to an ugly chain reaction of alliances. Six turns can go by, and you go from being at war with one civ, to 8 or more.


    For conducting early wars, BillChin's dense build works very well, combined with the swordsman conquest he outlined in the war academy. I find 7-8 cities neccessary, one or two usually to just hold luxuries (2 luxuries needed to get cities to size 6) or snag iron. Its powerful enough to grab a few outlying cities before the AI can respond, with each city supporting 4 units in despotism, you'll find your per turn income increase significantly.

    As the ancient age drags along, i'll usually switch to a horseman/swordsman combo, favoring horsemen slightly. It takes quite a few more cities to wage an effective war with horsemen though.

    My top picks for early warfare are the Iroquois, Egyptians, and naturally, the Persians.

    The mounted warrior and immortal are self explanatory. The Egyptian war chariot is great because its a horseman the majority of my cities can create in just 2 turns. I can honestly say that the war chariot has won me more games than any other UU. Just be careful not to pick up horseback riding in one of the early map trades, you'll lose your ability to build them. :(
     
  3. Rasczak2

    Rasczak2 Chieftain

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2002
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    10
    I play at the Emperor level, and I generally find that if build my cities, build archers until I can get the settler out once the city hits three, and repeat. You still get that fast expansion, but you build up an army of archers rather quickly.
     
  4. Zachriel

    Zachriel Kaiser

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    Location:
    Jovian System
    Sometimes an early war is best, usually the earlier the better. If you find your rival soon enough, then you should consider striking immediately.

    http://www.crowncity.net/civ3/fortuna.htm



    WARNING: Graphic intensive webpage. About 2 minutes on a phone modem. View in at least 1024x768 resolution (the same as Civ3).
     
  5. Sentinali

    Sentinali Chieftain

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    I have been sucessfully implimenting the follow Early War Strategy. Any comments? Do you have a different scheme? If so please reply.

    The Early War, a treatise on the rapid expansion of you civ at the expense of the others.

    Model Civ: Egyptian, can me modified for Iroq, Persia too.
    Map: any, just full of civs.

    Reseach Order:
    Wheel
    Ceremonial Burial
    Pottery
    head toward Monarchy...
    don't research Horseback riding, your War Chariots are cheaper and just as effective.

    City Build Order:
    warrior (fortify)
    warrior (explore)
    settler ------------------> spearman, worker, barracks, war chariots
    warrior (explore)
    warrior (explore)
    settler------------------> spearman, worker, barracks, war chariots
    spearman (fortify)
    settler------------------> spearman, worker, granary, alternate (settlers + spearman)
    barracks
    -- optional spearman (at higher dif levels)
    war chariots


    Worker Orders,
    #1: develop 3 Capital tiles, roads to new cities, road to nearest neighbour
    #2-#4: improve towns, connect new towns


    Sentinalis Art of Early War

    1.) Have an army of 5-6 veteren/ elite War Chariots, after your first battle reinforcements will be fast due to GA.

    2.) Always wait two squares from the target city for one turn, sometime you will draw out archers for easy picking and unit upgrades.

    3.) Plan your attack route, take cities in close proximity first, you give up bargaining power but you warm up your army and get those invaluable elite units easier. You also limit surprises of an army of archers showing up in your territory.

    4.) Always attack from higher ground, hills or mountains. Never attack from across a river (+25% defender bonus).

    5.) Attack en masse. I have witnessed 6 vetern/elite war chariots devastate a city with 3 hoplites with only 1 casualty and 2 retreats.

    6.) Follow up with workers and settlers, take the real estate earned with your soldiers blood.

    7.) Offer peace after you have conquered two towns, take all that they will give, rinse and repeat, in short, be a despot. This will ensure that "you get your tech and they eat it too".

    8.) Don't switch to republic (monarch switch is good), until you have the territory to last you until Military Tradition and calvary.


    Just a vague overview, any comments?

    Sent.:crazyeye:
     
  6. Sentinali

    Sentinali Chieftain

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    Location:
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    Last night I was playing a test game (on monarch), i was hemmed in on a small peninsula with the Frenchies blocking my expansion. I really didn't have room for even one more city.

    Luckily I had horses within my city radius, and without building a single settler, I built my war chariot army. I ended up routing the French, and the other 3 civs (it was a tiny pangea), by 0 AD. I never built a single settler and my score was outrageous!

    This goes to show the power of an early war, though obviously in a contrived situation (tiny map).

    Sent.
     
  7. Arrian

    Arrian Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
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    Location:
    Middletown, CT, USA
    I have become addicted to the power of the Japanese horseman rush.

    I play normal maps, continents, 8 civs, Monarch level. My goals for ancient era warfare:

    1) Great Leader(s)
    2) Gain territory & cities
    3) Destroy rivals

    I build my core cities, connect them with roads, build a temple & a barracks in each, and start pumping out chariots (lack of horses wrecks this strat, but that almost never happens, especially since you can see them from turn 1 as Japan). Research runs: warrior code, bronze working, iron working, masonry, horseback riding. Once I have Ironworking, I check for iron. If I have it within my borders, I will build maybe 5-8 vet warriors, then connect, then upgrade to swordsmen. I also build a few vet spearmen. City garrisons are the original regular warriors, there for riot control only. Upon discovery of horseback riding, I should have roughly 20 chariots. Those get upgraded to horsemen.

    And then I cut lose on my closest neighbor. Rinse, repeat, until I own my continent. The last civ will have the priveledge of living long enough to give my all their tech.

    This warfare should generate at least a couple of great leaders. One is needed for a well-placed forbidden palace. The others build wonders. If there is a time when no important wonder is available, I build an army and build the Heroic Epic.

    Then I can settle down and build to my heart's content. Once I've got Chivalry, I can decide whether or not to unleash a horde of Samurai on some poor, unsuspecting civ overseas. Properly done, this results in a HUGE lead. The key is the forbidden palace. It doubles your productivity early on. Plus, you will destroy 2-4 AI civs, cutting down on the AI tech trading. Every wonder you rush with a leader is one less the AI can build. You will have more of everything: cities, people, units, wonders, money, tech, luxuries, resources...

    It doesn't work every time, of course, but often enough to be worthwhile. And when it works *just so* OMG it's powerful.

    -Arrian
     
  8. Zachriel

    Zachriel Kaiser

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    I have found that the best time to attack is very dependent on the situation, especially map size. I generally try to have at least one good war in every age.

    Ever try Impis? They're a lot of fun. I really enjoy ancient warfare. Here I beat the Japanese very badly then negotiated for all their cities, but one. They are now under Impi guard, in their palace on a frozen penisula.

     
  9. God

    God God

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    Thanks Sentinali. I suck at ancient warfare, usually opt for expanding instead.
    Tried Monarch level and used horsmen rush. Worked well but it was on a small map. I've been trying to figure out how to win early war on standard map. it takes to long for my warriors to reach another civ to take their capital. Horsmen are faster but the AI expands like crazy.
     
  10. infanta

    infanta Chieftain

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    if i can get a city to rack up bout 10 production (2 forests, 4 mined grasslands and a bonus from an improved grasslands) i usually set this city up with barracks and continously produce arches/spearmen at 2 per turn

    the other cities i go for 3 shield production, a granary and thus a worker every 5 turns or settler every 10 (ideal settler factory is 1 square away from capitol and using a mined irrigated improved grassland square)

    then i use 2 workers to road to nearest civ and send an endless train of units at em (usually wait till batches of 3-4 archers+1 spearmen)

    if i cant see a civ i use the endless units to accelerate development elsewhere by disbanding

    fighting and constantly churning out settlers means very fast expansion and i tend to set up 2-3 settler/worker farms per barracks city

    once 2-3 barracks cities up and running i then think bout upgrading one of em to produce swordsmen at a rate of 3 per turn

    once the enemy civ down to last city i nab all their gold and tech and maps with peace treaty then go look for next civ (note on huge map the transit times may mean its quicker to disband units and rebuild em as a faster way to move em)

    once a civ knocked down like this they rarely recover (the current 40 turn unhappiness from rushing cripples em for ages)

    once the workers improved enough squares i may consider moving cities/ making improvements such aquaducts and colosseums whilst the other cites continue worker/settler/units

    doing it this way (a real boon for ancient civs for golden ages) means constant domination and continous expansion throughout whilst maintaining parity somewhat tech wise due to tributes

    admittedly i am a warmonger at heart so some may blanch at the idea of continous warfare and the level of micromanagement needed to maintain extended campaigns

    incidently i do road to and then make colonies for luxaries till i expand enough to get them under my borders and the border cities unable to muster enough production i tend to pop rush temples then leave em producing wealth and make the citizen a taxman to generate gold/pay for the temple/ provide more unit support

    my biggest problems tend to be the excessive sized armies i accumulate and the time needed to move em (though i have been known to use chains of gallys as an early version of railroads :p )

    as to which civs to do this with the answer is simple any of em that are miltaristic

    zulus expand quick due to graneries, aztecs and japenese get fast border expansion due to ability to pop rush temples for 1 pop), romans have the awesome legionary (i usually use high taxes for gold to maintain units and spies to cause wars with them whilst in republics) whilst chinese can outproduce most other civs earlier on

    admittedly i tend to use zulus as i like the expansionist/militarisitc combo

    at times i even manage to outperform the ai in expansion settler wise though this is usually as i play huge maps all the time
     
  11. Sentinali

    Sentinali Chieftain

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    I am downloading the 1.21f patch right now. From the list of comments about the patch so far I think that this strategy will become even more valuable with the new "rule". A general comment coming from the early reviews of the patch is that the AI expands slower. This is good is a couple ways:

    1.) slower expansion = larger AI cities, less cities are destroyed and more are assimilated.

    2.) less AI cities to destroy before they are eliminated

    3.) eliminated players don't restart (I really hted it when this happened).


    Gotta go play,

    Sent
     
  12. Sentinali

    Sentinali Chieftain

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    With the new patch installed, and preventing the free cpu restart I conquered my pangea with the Egyptians faster than ever. This patch has made the Early War strategy a tremendously powerful option on crowed maps.

    I have also noticed you keep more of the spoils of the war. My usual retention rate for cities was about 1/4 prior to patch as most of the cities werer quite small. After the patch that in creased to about 2/3. Quite a difference and a huge boost to an early conquest.

    Sent.
     
  13. Chingis Khan

    Chingis Khan Scourge Of The World

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    I agree with Rasczak2. I recently played a game and started by building a barracks first. Then pumped out archers interspaced with settlers. Once I have three or four cities, ALL production from then on is military. Once I have three archers, the nearest civ goes down hard. I will take two cities from him (normally leaves just his capital standing), rape him for all he's got and then my armies march to the next civ as fast as they can. IMHO Iroquios mounted warriors are undisputed early war heavyweights; almost so strong as to be unfair (think AOK Teutonic knights). Egyptian war chariots are powerful also. Don't worry about having an early GA, this allows you to pump out military even faster which allows you to conquor more land faster. A very nice trade off compared with a mid age GA and racing for wonders which you will still probably lose anyway (at Emporer level).
    PS: avoid the Greeks like they have syphillis unless you can get to them very quickly before they produce those damned, cursed hoplites (I hate those hoplites!)
     
  14. Sentinali

    Sentinali Chieftain

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    I gotta say, this strategy has gotten super powerful with the new patch. With random seed option off the save and reload feature has become a new cheat mechanism. With the odds already 2:1 in the favor of my elite horseman versus spearman, these odd "spear kills tank phenomena" has become a thing of the past! I really would like an IRON MAN feature in this game with a points bonus for doing so. I would really make for quite the challenge.

    As per the last comments about avoiding the hoplite. I really won't worry about it too much. I do usually attack the Greeks early, but they usually have a at least one hop in each of thier cities. The key here is fast units and a numbers game:

    ie; City with 2 Fortified Hoplites vs. your 4 E-Horseman.

    1st Horseman attack --> 45% chance of win, 22% chance of 1hp remaining in hoplite.

    2nd Horseman attack --> (new hop def), as above.

    You will likely loose one of the above horseman with the other retreating. The likelyhood of getting the hop down the 1hp very high (~70%).

    3rd and 4th Horsemen attack 1 hp Hoplite each, 87% chance of success, most likely with minor damage.

    Opponent losses - 1 city and 2 hoplites
    Production losses: 20X2hoplite+ 30X1settler = 70 shields

    Your loses - 1 horseman
    Production losses: 30 shields

    This is a 130% return on your production investment! This is IMO why this strategy works SO well.
     

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